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Sea Scouts To Be Removed From Venturing


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#1 robert12

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Posted 27 April 2015 - 06:37 AM

With the newly released 2015 revision of the Guide to Advancement(G2A), there are some major changes coming to Sea Scouts, pending a vote at the National Annual Meeting next month.(http://blog.scouting...iggest-changes/ states these changes are "pending a vote in May", I assume this is at the National Annual Meeting).

 

The changes are listed under "1.0.3.0 Significant Changes":

11. 4.4.0.0: Sea Scouts are not Venturers.
12. 4.4.1.6: Topic number changed from 4.4.1.7. The Sea Scout Bronze Award is discontinued, and Sea Scouts no longer work on Venturing awards
 
Below shows the changes in the G2A from the 2013 revision and the 2015 revision:
 
4.4.0.0 Mechanics of Advancement: In Sea Scouts
2013 Revision: Although a special-interest program carried on as part of Venturing, Sea Scouts has its own distinct language, customs, and advancement track....
2015 Revision: Sea Scouts has its own distinct language, customs, and advancement track.
 
 
4.4.1.7 Other Sea Scout Awards
2013 Revision: Other awards Sea Scouts may earn include the Small-Boat Handler bar, the Qualified Seaman bar, and the Long Cruise badge and arcs. The requirements are detailed in the Sea Scout Manual, No. 33239. All Venturing awards are also available, as are any BSA recognitions that are not limited to Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, or Varsity Scouts....
 
4.4.1.6 Other Sea Scout Awards
2015 Revision: Other awards Sea Scouts may earn include the Small-Boat Handler bar, the Qualified Seaman bar, and the Long Cruise badge and arcs. The requirements are detailed in the Sea Scout Manual, No. 33239. Also available are any BSA recognitions that are not limited to Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, or Venturers.
 
 
 
I should have seen this coming.  The National Boatswain is no longer a member of the Venturing National Youth Cabinet and the removal of Sea Scouts from all material related to Council, Area and Regional VOAs were just stepping stones to this proposed change.  With these changes that have already been made, the officially removing Sea Scouts from Venturing will not be that big of a change, but removing the opportunity to earn Venturing Awards will be.
 
I assume the vote in May will be to change the BSA's Rules and Regulation, Section 2, Clause 2(b), "Sea Scouts, BSA—A special-interest program carried on as a part of Venturing"

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#2 qwazse

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Posted 27 April 2015 - 07:41 AM

Having never known any Sea Scouts to want to persue venturing awards, (only venturers who wanted to be part of a Ship ... and in the process earn Quartermaster), I'm not sure what the implications of this really are.

 

Any participants who would like to collaborate across divisions will do so. The organizational chart won't make a difference. (In a sense this boils down to one (?) less meeting that someone has to send a representative to.)


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#3 Eagle94-A1

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Posted 27 April 2015 - 10:55 AM

I met one Sea Scout whose goal was to be a "Triple Eagle" by eanring Eagle, Quartermaster, and Silver. While he was registered in both a ship and a crew, the bulk of his work for Silver was done with his ship as the crew was the summer camp staff. 

 

I honestly do not know what to think.


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#4 Okpik

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 03:02 AM

There's an argument that goes: "why be a green shirt Venturer when you can do all that and more as a Sea Scout?"    As noted by the OP under the old advancement policies Sea Scouts could pursue all of the Venturing awards, but green shirts couldn't pursue actual Sea Scout advancement and earn Quartermaster.  As said above "Sea Scouts has its own distinct language, customs, and advancement track" and rightfully so as the BSA's oldest Senior Scout program it should have some honors that are distinctive to itself.   That said as BSA's somewhat more ubiquitous flagship Senior Scouting program so should Venturing.  

 

Without being attached to Venturing I think Sea Scouting will continue to attract and capture the imagination of many young people who will carry its august traditions forward to new generations.  After the better part of two decades I feel mainstream Venturing is still working on living up to its great potential and I think ending the marriage of convenience with Sea Scouting will give both programs an opportunity to hone the clarity of purpose they need.


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#5 NJCubScouter

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 10:25 AM

So in order to earn both Sea Scout awards and Venturing awards, from now on a youth member would have to be registered in both a Ship and a Crew, is that correct?

 

I have never actually "seen" a Sea Scout.  I know there is at least one Ship in Northern New Jersey because I got in touch with them when my mother was trying to give away a small boat after my father passed away.  As I recall, they didn't want it.  I have also seen one adult wearing a "Sea Scout knot", as I recall it was not actually a "knot" but was a trident.


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#6 qwazse

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 11:16 AM

Nobody's gonna grudge a Sea Scout who wants to earn the Summit award the chance to do so.

Where practical, s/he should multiple with a crew ... it's more fun that way.

Where it's not practical, I'm hoping his/her scouters will make it work for such an odd duck.


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#7 00Eagle

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 02:56 PM

So in order to earn both Sea Scout awards and Venturing awards, from now on a youth member would have to be registered in both a Ship and a Crew, is that correct?

 

I have never actually "seen" a Sea Scout.  I know there is at least one Ship in Northern New Jersey because I got in touch with them when my mother was trying to give away a small boat after my father passed away.  As I recall, they didn't want it.  I have also seen one adult wearing a "Sea Scout knot", as I recall it was not actually a "knot" but was a trident.

In Patriots Path Council( Nowthwest and Central-ish NJ), there were/are three ships:  Rahway & Linden area (#243 Sea Horse and #228 Sea Dart) and Ship 191 Hopatcong.  I think Middlesex County had a ship or two, not sure which council they ended up in.  At recent PPC Univerisites of Scouting I've seen Ship 228 have a table and bumped into the Bosun and Mates from a Queens (NYC) ship.

 

My three regrets of my youth scouting career: not earning a religious emblem, not earning more than 21 merit badges, AND NEVER being a Sea Scout/Sea Explorer :-(


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#8 NJCubScouter

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Posted 28 April 2015 - 03:36 PM

In Patriots Path Council( Nowthwest and Central-ish NJ), there were/are three ships:  Rahway & Linden area (#243 Sea Horse and #228 Sea Dart) and Ship 191 Hopatcong.  I think Middlesex County had a ship or two, not sure which council they ended up in.  At recent PPC Univerisites of Scouting I've seen Ship 228 have a table and bumped into the Bosun and Mates from a Queens (NYC) ship.

 

That's my council.  :)  I suspect that I spoke with the Rahway unit.  (This was several years ago.)  I did not know about the Hopatcong unit, that would have been the logical one to call first given the geography of the situation.  As for Middlesex County, a few of the northwestern towns were already in PPC to begin with, I am not sure whether the neighboring towns ended up in our council or in Monmouth council.


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#9 BadenP

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Posted 04 May 2015 - 05:25 PM

The reason they combined Sea Scouts with Venturing in the first place was that Sea Scouts numbers and ships have been dwindling rapidly over the last two decades and National hoped that by combining the two programs it would help to bring new life to both of them, but it did not work out as they hoped. Sea Scouts is a very expensive program, maintaining a power boat, insurance, fuel,maintenance, parts, and docking fees make it cost prohibitive these days. All of our councils ships are long gone and it was sad to see one of the original  and great programs of scouting disappear, it is all in the economics.


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#10 desertrat77

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Posted 06 May 2015 - 07:45 AM

A couple years ago, I was in a district in Northern California, not too far from the coast.   There was one Sea Scout ship in the district, staying alive only through the incredible dedication of the skipper.   He had been skipper for at least a couple decades, but was getting on in years and was actively recruiting for a replacement, but with little success the last time I talked to him.   Getting new sea scouts proved difficult as well.   As others have pointed out, this sadly is not an isolated case.   There were plenty of youth in the area, the skipper was enthusiastic and always had adventures on the water lined up.   But as I think about it, packs/troops/crews had the same problem as well in that region.  


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#11 robert12

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Posted 29 May 2015 - 08:06 AM

Has anyone heard any update out of the annual meeting on this?


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#12 robert12

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Posted 04 June 2015 - 07:09 AM

According to THIS the resolution that proposed splitting Sea Scouting from Venturing was brought before the National BSA Council and was sent to the Operations Committee for further study, all resolutions presended were sent back to committees for further study. 

 

Also mentioned on that link is there will be a pilot program for younger participants in Sea Scouts and Venturing that will be rolling out soon.


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#13 Scouter99

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Posted 19 June 2015 - 05:27 PM

Also mentioned on that link is there will be a pilot program for younger participants in Sea Scouts and Venturing that will be rolling out soon.

 

So long, GSUSA.


"The numbers in a Troop should preferably not exceed thirty two. I suggest this number because in training boys myself I have found that sixteen was about as many I could deal with - in getting at and bringing out the individual character in each. I allow for other people being twice as capable as myself and hence the total of thirty-two."

-Baden-Powell, Aids to Scoutmastership


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